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Category: Health

Vegan Veggie Roll-up

Vegan Veggie Roll-up

This is a super yummy sandwich that I found on pinterest one day and decided to make for lunch (originally pinned from FitSugar which is a great site for recipes and healthy tips). I tend to eat a lot of salads but that can get boring and I always end up eating some kind of dessert after because I have room in my belly for it. This veggie sandwich is pretty hearty and packed with protein so it really fills you up. I usually eat half and then save the other half for lunch the next day. I’ll probably still eat some kind of dessert after…who am I kidding? Actually, on a side note, I recently discovered that Medjool Dates make a great healthy dessert. I bought some to use in a recipe and ended up eating one after dinner and it totally satisfied my sweet tooth!

So I got all of the ingredients from Trader Joes and below you can see how I made my vegan veggie roll-up. I’m not going to write out how I made the wrap because the pictures say it all…but in the second photo, I put a little bit of olive oil and herbs on the wrap to start.

IMG_1844 IMG_1845 IMG_1846 IMG_1847 IMG_1849Vegan Veggie Roll-upIf you’d like, follow me on Pinterest!


Vegan Swiss Chard Wraps

vegan swiss chard wrapsvegan swiss chard wrapsvegan swiss chard wrapsI am so happy that I got to spend over 2 weeks back in Massachusetts with my family. For anyone that doesn’t know, my mom has breast cancer and is currently recovering from her 2nd surgery. It meant the world to me that I was able to help out with the cooking, cleaning, laundry and taking my mom to her doctors appointments. I swear to god, this trip really brought out my maternal instincts!

I was also really excited to share some of my healthy recipes with them. My mom has committed to losing weight and my Dad wants to be a positive support so hopefully I was able to help. I had always wanted to try making one of these leafy wraps but I never got around to it. This was my first attempt and they came out pretty damn good! This is how I made them:

Blanch the swiss chard leaves (bring water to a boil, then put the leaves in for like 2-3 minutes)
Place the leaves in an ice bath to stop them from cooking (big bowl of ice water)
Lay the leaves out and pat them dry, squeezing out the excess water
Cut out the spines so that you have two halves, then overlap them
Put the filling in the middle of the leaf
For the filling, I used:
Roasted red pepper hummus
black beans
shredded carrots
Then, wrap them up tucking in the sides as you go…yum!

Raw Food Juice Cleanse

raw food and juice cleanseEarlier this year my boyfriend saw a Groupon for a 4 day juice cleanse for $75 per person. Since I’m no stranger to cleanses and haven’t done one in a while, I was totally game for doing this. Apparently the Groupon was pretty popular since we weren’t able to start the cleanse until now. The cleanse is from a company called Extract Juice Bar based out of Newport Beach, CA. This morning we went to pick up our supply for today and tomorrow. On Thursday we will pick up our supply for that day and Friday. The photo above is everything that I got for 2 days (minus drink 1 since I already drank it). What I like about this cleanse is that it allows you to eat! It is not intended to starve you and you are allowed to eat as much RAW food as you want while cleansing. I think the most challenging thing for me is that I can’t have coffee! This is my boyfriends first cleanse so I’m hoping he can make it thru without cheating.

If you want to read more about the company click here.

Also, if you have any good juice cleanse recommendations please share! 🙂

Organic/Vegan Dessert: Chocolate Dipped PB & Banana Sandwiches

After watching the documentaries “Forks over Knives” and “Vegucated”, I’ve been really into adopting a more plant-based diet and using organic products as much as possible. I highly recommend these documentaries to anyone who is interested in improving their health, battling cancer or just curious about Veganism in general. I don’t think I’ll ever become a true Vegan because I LOVE LOVE LOVE cheese and yogurt, but other than that, it wouldn’t be too hard.

Ever since I was a little girl, I have always been turned off by meat. I would tell people, “the only flesh I eat is chicken and turkey…with NO bones!”. If my Mom made chicken for dinner, I would make my Dad cut it up for me so I wouldn’t have to look at something that resembled an animal on my plate. My Dad is Italian, works at a seafood company and used to go deer hunting up in Maine so he was never too thrilled that I was such a picky eater.

Being from Massachusetts, we had lots of Lobster cookouts. I’ll never forget the day that I walked into the kitchen just as my Dad was placing a live lobster into a pot of boiling water…I was probably 7 years old…I was so upset that I yelled at him and called him a killer and then ran into my room crying. I didn’t speak to him for the rest of the day. I never tried lobster until I was probably 18 or 19. I put it in my mouth, chewed once and then spit it out. The second and last time I tried lobster was 3 years ago when I took a bite of my friends lobster taco. It was ok. It still bothers me to watch people eat lobster…with their bibs on, cracking open the scorched body of an oversized cockroach and eating its insides…so gross.

On a lighter note, I found this bomb recipe for a healthy, vegan dessert on pinterest and decided to give it a try. I eat dessert at least once a day, so I thought it would be good to make it a healthy one! The recipe called for bananas, peanut butter and graham crackers but I took it to the next level..oh yeah.

healthy vegan organic dessert

I went to Whole Foods and got organic bananas, organic peanut butter and organic grahams crackers. I also thought the recipe would be better with chocolate…duh…so I decided to try out some vegan chocolate chips for melting/dipping.


I never really measure out stuff when I cook, unless Im baking, so I have no idea how much peanut butter I used…just use what you think looks good. Cut up a ripe banana, put it in the bowl with the peanut butter and then start mashing it up.IMG_7096


Break your graham crackers in half. Spread the mixture onto one half of the cracker and then put the other half on top to make a sandwich.IMG_7112

Now, melt that chocolate! This part can be tricky if you don’t have a double boiler (the best way to melt chocolate). I don’t have one so I had to use the microwave. I put the power on 50% and started by heating it for 30 seconds, then 20 seconds, then 15 seconds and so on, stopping in between to stir it. This is really important so that you don’t overheat or burn the chocolate. That always sucks…I’ve done it plenty of times.IMG_7114

Once the chocolate is melted, start dipping! I dipped just one side of the sandwiches because it was easier. Place the dipped sandwiches on parchment paper and on a plate and then put them in the freezer for an hour or so. That’s it! Healthy faux ice cream sandwiches. They’re actually pretty good too.

Splurge: John Masters Bodycare

I had a “moment” at Whole Foods the other day. I was looking for natural and/or organic body lotion and shower gel. I was probably sniffing bottles for 20 min. because I’m slow at making decisions. I came across this bottle of John Masters Blood Orange & Vanilla Body Milk and holy yum! It was too good to pass up. It’s friggin expensive tho! I only use a tiny bit on special occasions…or I mix it with body oil to spread it out. It would make a great gift set also. If you like Vanilla, you’ll LOVE this…promise.

The Best All Natural Deodorant




Honestly, it’s been a long, smelly quest to discover the best natural deodorant on the market right now. When I first made the switch, I was advised that it would take 6 months to a year for my body to adjust to using a natural deodorant. I was using a deodorant/anti-persperant previously, so my sweat glands were probably used to being clogged..eww. Anyways, I was up for the challenge. I started with Lafe’s Natural deodorant in Tea Tree. It’s a roll-on and comes out pretty liquidy. I used it until it was gone. I had to re-apply it often and I definitely felt like I was sweating a lot more. I figured it was just my body going through the adjustments. Once I ran out of this, I got the same kind in a Powder scent…it was nasty. Next, I tried Jason’s Natural deodorant in Tea Tree. It was OK but had some questionable ingredients and also didn’t smell that great. The worst of them was next…Aubrey Organics E plus High C Natural Deodorant. I mean, I smelled worse with this stuff on then no deodorant at all! It smelled great in the bottle, and I use a lot of their products so I trusted them, but this one sank. I went shopping with my boyfriend and while we were in the fitting room together he looked at me and laughed. He said I smelled horrible and he had to vacate the changing room! I had to agree with him.

Finally, I found a winner…I discovered Soapwalla Natural Deodorant Cream. It has a unisex, fresh smell and creamy consistency. It lasted pretty long but sometimes I had to apply it twice during the day. The only drawback to this is that you have to rub it on so you have to wash your hands after. I was fine with this product until I started to get a burning rash on my pits! I thought maybe it was because I applied it after I shaved, but whatever the reason, it burned like hell. Other than that, I actual recommend this product!

Soapwalla Deodorant Cream $12

I had to explore further after hearing about LaVanilla’s Healthy Deodorant, even though the Soapwalla one got better reviews. I took a trip to Sephora and smell tested each scent. They have 7 different scents! They really smelled amazing but I was skeptical based on my experience…and the $18 price tag, ouch! After smelling each scent, I decided on the Vanilla Grapefruit. It has a fresher scent to it…one that I would rather have under my arms. I’ve been using this for about a month now and so far, so good! In this heat, I typically need to apply it twice a day but it hasn’t irritated my skin and it’s more convenient to apply. In my opinion, this is the winner and of course the most expensive, but to me it’s worth it.

Just a side note: They also have a smaller travel size in the Vanilla Lavender scent for $10 for those who want to test it out without spending the full $18.

Lavanilla Healthy Deodorant $18


Chocolate-Covered Orange Body Balm

I am happy to say that I have successfully finished my first homemade beauty product! It was so insanely easy, anyone can do it. I got the recipe from the book, Organic Body Care Recipes by Stephanie Tourles. Below I have listed the ingredients, where to get them and the directions. This body balm is so rich and melts on contact. A little goes a long way! On warmer days, I mix a dab of this balm with my regular body lotion (currently using Unscented Ultimate Moisturizing Lotion by Aubrey Organics) so it’s not too heavy. Next time, I am going to try this recipe with vanilla essential oil, yum!


7 tablespoons coconut base oil (extra-virgin, unrefined)
*you can find this in the natural foods section of your grocery store, at Whole Foods, Trader Joes or online

1 tablespoon cocoa butter
*I bought mine online here and used half a stick for the recipe

40 drops sweet orange essential oil
*you can find this at Whole Foods or online

Storage container
*I used a plastic body butter jar that I had saved after I used up the product



In a small sauce pan over low heat, warm the coconut oil and cocoa butter until the butter is just melted.

Remove from heat and let cool for 15 minutes.

Add the essential oil and stir to blend.

Pour into storage container and cap. Allow the mixture to set for 24 hours.

*No refrigeration is required, but for maximum freshness and potency, please use within 1 year.